Clients may have a whole range of fears when faced with the court process, ranging from the delay and costs, to fears as to whether the Judge will be able to give the time needed, whether listings will be inconvenient or a case will be left part heard or be appealed. Family arbitration has had a handful of success stories in the short period of its existence, and to encourage family lawyers to engage in what may well be their first arbitration with confidence FLBA and Resolution are fully supporting a short-term introductory offer whereby volunteer accredited Panel Arbitrators will take on appropriate cases for a maximum fee of £1,500 (plus any disbursements), provided the arbitration is commenced before the end of October 2012.

Members advising clients on alternatives to court should consider arbitration. Where reaching an outcome appears to require the imposition of a solution, then the DIY, mediation and collaborative processes are unlikely to work. Where a difficult point of law or disclosure is concerned, then those options may not be best for the family.

No one process can provide a panacea of course, but arbitration is another way to resolve financial questions for some, particularly where there are worries about proportionality (for example Schedule 1 or variation cases) or simply where resources are limited and an early solution is crucial.

For further information, including details of this promotion, please contact any of the arbitrators using their contact details in the IFLA directory.

You can download the Scheme Rules and the Application Form ARB1 on the IFLA website.

You can also access the arbitrators’ step by step guide here and further information is available via the ‘key information’ section of